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Minnesota at Chicago

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Minnesota (69-73)0140110007141
Chi. White Sox (61-81) «20030030x8161

Thome three HRs from 500; Pierzynski provides pop for ChiSox

CBSSports.com wire reports
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CHICAGO -- In anticipation of home run No. 500, Jim Thome is having a hard time blocking out the extra attention.

Thome hit his 497th and added the go-ahead RBI single in the seventh inning to help the Chicago White Sox beat the Minnesota Twins 8-7 on Saturday.

"When I got to about 10 (away) you get more calls, you get people that call you a little more that mention it and talk about it, your family talks about it. I try to listen to it, but not all that much," said Thome, who hit No. 496 the night before.

"I try to ignore them a little bit. It is a fun thing. It's something to enjoy, it's something I tried not to get caught up into, but it's getting hard. The excitement is there."

A.J. Pierzynski hit a tying, pinch-hit two-run homer in the seventh and Paul Konerko also homered for the White Sox, who won for just the seventh time in 26 games.

There is a chance that Thome might hit his 500th against the Indians, who come into Chicago for a three-game series starting Monday. Thome played 12 seasons with the Indians and every time he returned as a visitor he was booed.

When asked if it would mean anything to hit 500 against Cleveland

Thome responded: "I think you know the answer."

Torii Hunter homered and Jason Tyner drove in three runs as the Twins lost their season-high sixth straight.

After blowing a six-run lead in the ninth on Friday night, the Twins couldn't hold on to a two-run lead in the seventh.

Juan Uribe doubled off Twins reliever Kevin Slowey, then with two outs, Pierzynski homered off Carmen Cali (0-1) on the first pitch. After Jerry Owens walked, Scott Podsednik singled and Thome followed with an RBI single to put the White Sox ahead 8-7.

"If you don't make pitches you don't get people out. That's the bottom line. Cali didn't make any pitches and he didn't get any lefties out and that's his job," said Twins manager Ron Gardenhire.

Mike Myers (4-0) pitched the sixth and seventh innings for the victory and Matt Thornton got four outs for his second save of the season.

Brian Buscher also homered for the Twins, who have lost 10 of their last 12.

Jason Kubel led off the fifth inning with a double off White Sox starter Jose Contreras and scored on Tyner's bunt single to break a 5-all tie.

Hunter chased Contreras in the sixth inning with a leadoff home run to put the Twins up 7-5. It was Hunter's 28th of the season.

Contreras pitched five-plus innings and allowed seven runs, but three were unearned. He struck out two and walked one to avoid his 17th loss of the season.

Thome went deep off Minnesota starter Matt Garza on a 2-0 pitch for his 25th homer of the season in the first inning. Then on the next pitch, Konerko hit his 28th homer to give the White Sox a 2-0 lead. It was the seventh time this season the White Sox have hit back-to-back homers.

Pierzynski already knows where he will be when Thome hits 500.

"I'm going to be the first guy out there to get in the picture," Pierzynski said. "Hopefully I'm in the game. I will be two guys behind him as soon as I see it leave I will be the first one to run and meet him. I'm going to beat Konerko out there."

Notes

  • Garza went four innings and gave up five runs, three earned, on nine hits.
  • Thome's home run was measured at 432 feet.
  • Twins C Joe Mauer missed the game with a left hamstring injury. He hasn't started since Aug. 25 but will start on Sunday against the White Sox.
  • Uribe matched a career-high for the fourth time with four hits.
  • Morales had his first major league hit in the second inning and finished 3-for-3 after leaving with a sprained ankle in the fifth inning.
 
Copyright 2014 by STATS LLC and The Associated Press. Any commercial use or distribution without the express written consent of STATS LLC and The Associated Press is strictly prohibited.
 
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Jim Thome watches career homer No. 497 take flight in the bottom of the first inning.  (AP)
Jim Thome watches career homer No. 497 take flight in the bottom of the first inning. (AP)

Players of the Game
Chicago

P. Konerko
AB 4
R 1
H 2
HR 1
RBI 3
Minnesota

J. Tyner
AB 5
R 0
H 2
HR 0
RBI 3
 
Minnesota Twins
Jason Tyner, LF5023022 .299
Luis Rodriguez, 2B5010003 .222
Torii Hunter, CF5121003 .292
Justin Morneau, 1B4100110 .280
Michael Cuddyer, RF5120012 .280
Jason Kubel, DH3111001 .263
   a- Rondell White, PH-DH1000010 .146
Brian Buscher, 3B4222012 .277
   b- Jason Bartlett, PH1000000 .276
Jose Morales, C31300001.000
    Chris Heintz, PR-C1000000 .220
Nick Punto, SS4010004 .200
Totals41714716  
a-struck out for Kubel in the 9th
b-grounded out for Buscher in the 9th
Batting
2B - Torii Hunter (40, Contreras), Michael Cuddyer (25, Contreras), Jason Kubel (25, Contreras), Jose Morales (1, Contreras)
HR - Torii Hunter (28, Contreras), Brian Buscher (2, Contreras)
SF - Jason Kubel (5)
RBI - Jason Tyner 3 (21), Torii Hunter (99), Jason Kubel (54), Brian Buscher 2 (4)
2-OUT RBI - Jason Tyner 3 (10)
Team LOB - 9
Fielding
E - Brian Buscher (4, Misplayed grounder)
Minnesota Twins
Matt Garza 4953352 3.71
Kevin Slowey 2.2311020 5.24
Carmen Cali (BS,1; L,0-1)0322101 5.03
Pat Neshek 1100110 2.78
Matt Guerrier 0.1000010 2.38
IBB - Thome by Matt Garza, Pierzynski by Pat Neshek
HBP - Cintron (by Pat Neshek)
Pitches-Strikes - Matt Garza 88-53, Kevin Slowey 44-27, Carmen Cali 11-6, Pat Neshek 34-22, Matt Guerrier 6-3
Ground Balls-Fly Balls - Matt Garza 3-4, Kevin Slowey 2-4, Pat Neshek 1-1
Batters Faced - Matt Garza 24, Kevin Slowey 11, Carmen Cali 4, Pat Neshek 6, Matt Guerrier 1
Chicago White Sox
Jerry Owens, CF5221123 .247
Scott Podsednik, LF5010024 .260
Jim Thome, DH4122120 .270
Paul Konerko, 1B4123102 .262
Jermaine Dye, RF4010111 .247
Alex Cintron, 3B4010004 .232
Juan Uribe, SS5240011 .227
Danny Richar, 2B5020005 .214
Toby Hall, C3100010 .204
   a- A.J. Pierzynski, PH-C1112100 .268
Totals40816859  
a-homered for Hall in the 7th
Batting
2B - Juan Uribe 2 (14, Slowey, Slowey), Danny Richar 2 (5, Garza, Neshek)
HR - Jim Thome (25, Garza), Paul Konerko (28, Garza), A.J. Pierzynski (14, Cali)
RBI - Jerry Owens (12), Jim Thome 2 (79), Paul Konerko 3 (78), A.J. Pierzynski 2 (46)
2-OUT RBI - Jim Thome 2 (29), Paul Konerko 3 (32), A.J. Pierzynski 2 (18)
Team LOB - 14
Fielding
PB - Toby Hall (5)
E - Alex Cintron (8, Misplayed grounder)
Chicago White Sox
Jose Contreras 51374122 5.91
Mike Myers (W,4-0) 2100010 3.83
Mike MacDougal (H,18) 0.2000000 6.56
Matt Thornton (S,2) 1.1000030 4.76
Pitches-Strikes - Jose Contreras 97-55, Mike Myers 27-17, Mike MacDougal 5-4, Matt Thornton 18-14
Ground Balls-Fly Balls - Jose Contreras 8-6, Mike Myers 4-1, Mike MacDougal 2-0, Matt Thornton 1-0
Batters Faced - Jose Contreras 30, Mike Myers 7, Mike MacDougal 2, Matt Thornton 4
Game Information
Attendance - 31747
Game Time - 3:25
Temperature - 76
Umpires - Home - C.B. Bucknor, First Base - Joe West, Second Base - Ed Rapuano, Third Base - Ed Hickox